How to Research - Redux
...As a Young Entrepreneur
We get it. You’re a GenZ entrepreneur, an expert at navigating the internet or social media. Anything you want to know you can find out in seconds. But here’s the thing. You’re finding out information, facts, data. That’s useful but you can’t gain knowledge or deep insights in that time. How do you get to be that person who knows real stuff?
The bad news is you have to live it, sweat it, grind it out for years. The good news is that those who have done that will often tell you what they learned. Why would they do that?
Because people like to help people to a surprising degree. They like to show they know stuff, and then they’re happy to tell you what that is. It’s like osmosis. They’re saturated with really useful experience and insights, and you’re this dry sponge. All you have to do is be near them and soon you’ll be swimming in knowledge that took decades to learn.
So how can you get their attention? The best way, as so often in life, is the scary way. Call them. Contact them via any medium where they like to hang out, website, social, WhatsApp group, LinkedIn, whatever.
Maybe start by commenting positively on something they’re doing or have recently done. Maybe see if you can do something for them – a tech insight, a friend who would be useful to them, just give first if you can. Then it’s reasonable to ask. You’re young, you’re thirsty for knowledge, keen, bright, positive. That’s very attractive.
DON’T tell them you want two hours of their time; or ask for their entire black book of contacts; or tell them how you could do it better.
DO ask if you could buy them coffee or a drink; ask for some specific information, maybe something you don’t quite understand; ask if you could pop in and take 15 minutes of their time when it was convenient to them – if you’re lucky it will overrun.
Literally, what is the worst that could happen? They could say no or ignore you. That’s it. What about good outcomes? Maybe they’ll be flattered and want to help. Maybe they’ll become a mentor.
Maybe you worry about your ability to communicate effectively with more senior people. Here's a short and quick course that will help turn you into a more confident and professional young entrepreneur: Communication Skills course